Thursday, January 26, 2012


I had mentioned in my previous blogs that I was going to explain the allergies and dog dilemma, well here it goes……..

Every summer we travel to Canada to visit my family.  My aunt and uncle have a beautiful home on the golf course they own and a pool in the back yard to enjoy.  Contrary to popular belief a Canadian summer is just like ours, hot and humid.  Not to mention my family doesn’t live too far from Windsor which is in Southern Ontario.  So last August when we took our trip, summer was in full swing and so were the bees.
I had walked out my aunt’s front door to get something from the van for one of the kids.  Well usually when you walk out someone’s door you expect to walk right back in that same door but my aunt’s door must lock on its own after it closes because I couldn’t get back in.  I shrugged my shoulders, turned around to go to the back gate to gain re-entry into the backyard when I hear “Buuuuuuuuuuzzzzzzzzzzzzz” and felt a ZAP then I yelled “OOOOUUUUCH!” Yep, something stung me and stung me good!  I was swiping at my shoulder blade saying “ouch, ouch, ouch, ouch,” when I entered the backyard and my husband was half concerned and half giggling.  My aunt asked what was wrong and I said that I had gotten stung.  She asked if I was allergic and I responded no, not that I know of.  She reassured me that they had an epi-pen at the golf course clubhouse if we needed it.  I told her that I felt fine, just a little dizzy and George said that it was probably just the adrenaline.  They examined my shoulder blade to make sure the stinger was out and got me some ice to take down the swelling.  The rest of the day went great. 
Fast forward two weeks later , my friend called and told us to come over for a farewell bonfire as they were moving out of Columbus for our home town Toledo.   George gave me the green light to go by myself and he’d stay behind to elevate his ankle that he’d hurt earlier in the day.  He was just going to head outside and make his own bonfire. Before I left I loaded up a small cooler of beer and brought out a radio for him so he could really relax.  I sat and had one glass of wine with him and discussed the success of my dad’s 70th surprise birthday we had that day before I departed.  Since the kids were sleeping I left out the back gate and walked around front to hop in my husband’s car.  Once I got near our rose of Sharon bush I felt something shock my ankle.  I thought no way could it have been a bee since it was 9:30 at night.  I was “ouch, ouch, ouch, ouching” to the car and brushing my ankle to get the stinging to stop, to no avail.  Once I reached the car I got this flash of light headedness and felt flush but I just chalked it up to adrenaline like at my aunt’s house and climbed in the car and headed to my friend’s house.  Once I got there I told them what had happened and they checked out my ankle and didn’t see the stinger or much swelling.  After my bee sting story was explained I poured myself a glass of wine and headed out back to enjoy the fire and some conversation. 
I felt so relaxed by the fire after such a long day that when my heart started to race I got a little nervous.  I mentioned my racing heart to my friend and she said to just try to relax and stay calm, but it was hard to stay calm when my hands and arms started shaking, my legs went week and my head started to feel like a lead ball.  Now I’ve never passed out before so I would have no idea what it would feel like preceding a fainting spell but that’s what I felt like was about to happen.  My friend’s husband had come back from the store to find her on the phone with 9-1-1 and me not looking so good.  Once the paramedics arrived they checked my pulse, my pupils and placed a clamp on my finger.  They asked me a ton of questions about the sting, looked over the point of entry, asked what I had done all day and what I had eaten. They explained that since I hadn’t gone into anaphylaxis or passed out then I clearly wasn’t allergic to bees and said that maybe I had too much wine and too much sun. Maybe, but I highly doubted it since I only had one glass.  All while this was going on my friend kept trying to reach my husband but he wasn’t answering his cell.  I had refused transport to the hospital and returned back to the bonfire to settle down; my friends wouldn’t let me leave until I returned to somewhat normal.   We texted George to disregard the voice mail but the text didn’t even get a reply. 
Once I left and returned home I found my husband, my neighbor and his wife all sitting around the fire talking, laughing and totally oblivious to my emergency call to George, and 9-1-1.  I explained what had happened and they just sat amazed.  I wasn’t feeling very good and I was super tired so I bid them au due and headed for the comfort of my air conditioning and pillow. The next morning we were supposed to go to church but I was still feeling awful and I just figured it was from the busyness of the day before. However, I sucked it up, got in the shower and we loaded up the kids in the van for church.  I could barely stay awake listening to the Pastor preach about our glorious God.  My sleepiness in church is unusual since I am always in awe of what is being said, but not this Sunday morning.  By the time we had got home I was feeling exhausted and sick.  I had to lie down, my husband of course understood. I thanked him for taking care of the kids and I crashed into our bed.  I had fallen into our bed about 12:30 and didn’t wake up until 3:30! After I had rubbed the grogginess out of my eyes I headed downstairs to be with my family.
After all of this feeling sick and being exhausted it had me concerned that the paramedics may have been incorrect in their analysis of my situation.  I called my doctor on Monday and told her the symptoms I had experienced and she told me to call an allergist and soon.  I called my daughters allergist and they got me in on the same day as my daughter’s appointment.  I had made an appointment for her after we noticed rashes and painful ear rubbing after ingesting some peanut butter.  Since my bee sting was so close to the appointment date they couldn’t do the venom testing and have a good result.  They wanted me to be six weeks away from the sting.  In the meantime they were testing my daughter for environmental allergies along with the peanut allergy.  Everything came back negative except the peanuts.  She was most definitely allergic to peanuts.  So the allergist explained that since she was so young it would be best if we just stayed away from tree nuts completely.  Not only would it be easy for us to teach her that nuts were not a part of her diet, it was also easier to explain it to friends and family as well.  He also explained that she could develop a reaction to any nut at any time.   On our way out with this alarming new information I stopped and rescheduled my bee sting testing appointment. 
5 weeks later I was back in the allergist’s office to be tested for bees.  First they administered some environmental tests and it came back that I was allergic to mold, pollen, ragweed, grass, dust mites and dogs; so in a nutshell I am allergic to the planet and my dog.  Herein lies one of the dilemmas, we’ve had our dog for six years and with my out control cough we had to decided what to do. Why didn’t I know of this before? Well, ever since I quit smoking the cilia in my lungs were awakened to the allergens in my body including the allergy to my dog hence my ignorance to the dog allergy.  After they tested me for the environmental element it was on to the venom testing.  After 4 sticks of needles in my arms it came back that I was indeed allergic to honey bees and yellow jackets, but not wasps which is what I probably got stung by in Canada. So now I have to carry two Epi-pens; one for Mary’s peanut allergy and one for my bee allergy.  Enter dilemma #2, the rose of Sharon bush in the front yard.  It’s big and beautiful but my husband says he won’t cut it down until we can replace it with something, which means more than likely it will still be in our yard this summer.  
To recap, Mary’s allergy equals one, peanuts; my allergy equals the planet, bees and dogs. Maybe I should just live in a bubble?  I go back and forth about what to do with the dog.  On one hand he’s been with our family for six years, the kids love him, and George feels better about him being around for security.  On the other hand, he sheds too much, he begs too much, he costs too much and I would be ok with finding him a better home.  Then after I think of his absence I get all teary eyed and if I even mention him going away Samuel gets very emotional and hugs Boomer and uses his best sad voice to exclaim “NO! Boomer stays here!” As for dilemma two, the bush, it’s really not a big dilemma for me; I want it gone as it attracts every bee as far as Delaware! It’s my husband that has this attachment to it.  He thinks cutting it down will make the front of the house look stupid, which it may but what’s more important, the appearance of the house or my life? 
I know it’s said that God has his plan for everything, but I really don’t understand his plan for allergies. And how I went almost 26 years since my last bee sting is beyond me, again God's plan! Let’s just continue to pray for everyone’s health since Mary and my allergies to peanuts and bees can be life threatening.  I also pray that Mary’s childhood is easy to navigate around the ingredients of all snacks and meals.  God is good so I know he’ll be looking out for us and keep us safe.
God Bless

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Samuel + Mary = ENT issues

Most moms you talk to always seem to have a sick kid in their home, specifically when you have multiple kids and those kids are in school with direct contact to every germ our planet has to offer.  My kids too have been sick, especially last winter someone in this house was sick for 7 weeks straight, so I feel those momma’s pain.  In the case with my kids, having the sniffles and coughs it always leads to humidifiers, mattress elevation, cough medicine, and eventually calls to the doctor and the inevitable happens, ear and/or sinus infections. 

All these issues really started to take shape when Mary was an infant.  I was constantly arriving at the doctor’s office to leave with a prescription for antibiotics for her latest ear infection.  She ended up having 6 ear infections between Halloween and February of the next year.  So when she had an ear infection at Christmas in 2010 the doctor decided it was time for tubes in the ears.  I was nervous about this because my little tiny baby was going to have to be administered anesthesia and have surgery.  Well of course my baby girl was a champ and came out of the surgery with a few screams of terror from waking up in a strange place but by the time I got her in the van and gave her a bottle she had immediately stopped crying.  Once home she slept most of the day and upon waking it was as if nothing had ever happened. Now that she has the tubes in her ears, ear infections do not exist for her.
My son Samuel on the other hand we’ve been noticing that his breathing is slightly labored at night; ok to be honest he snores like an adult male with a head cold.  He wakes up coughing at night and always seems to be stuffed up.  My husband conducted an experiment; he put his hand over my son’s mouth and discovered he couldn’t breathe.  Then he plugged is nose and my son could have cared less. 
In light of this little experiment I decided to take him to my allergist in October because he didn’t have a cold but had coughing and sniffles.  They tested him for all the environment things including dogs.  We had him tested for dogs specifically since I was allergic to dogs but all tests came up negative.  (Another blog about allergies, dogs and my dilemma coming soon!)  Even though he wasn’t allergic to anything the allergist did say that his nose looked inflamed, but of course he used some big medical term that even 4th year med students still have a hard time pronouncing and the under part of his eyes were darkened which also indicates sinus issues.  So he sent us on our way with Nasonex and told us to use it daily. 
Fast forward to Christmas; I have two kids with horrible coughs and sniffles.  So horrible in fact my daughter was puking because of the velocity of her cough and my son couldn’t sleep he was so rattled with coughs.  So I took them both to the doctors to discover Samuel had double ear infections, sinus infection and wheezing that was due to respiratory constriction from drainage.  Mary had the same issues, minus the ear infections because of the addition of tubes.  So they were both on antibiotics and an albuterol inhaler during Christmas, fun right?
Even after all the treatments of antibiotics and inhalers my son still has a breathing issue.  Not only does he have a breathing issue but we’ve also noticed a hearing issue.  He says “what” a lot or may not hear his own name.  This may just be a symptom of being 4 but one can’t be too caution when it comes to little ears.  Because I have these concerns I mentioned them to the kid’s doctor today when I had Mary in for her two year well check. 
I’ll come back to Samuel in one paragraph; I must mention Mary’s well check results.  We have to call an ophthalmologist because she’s concerned about her right eye as it appears to be turning inward. She thinks it’s probably nothing as the bridge of Mary’s nose is still thin but she wants to be proactive and not wait another year to check her out and find that she has a lazy eye.  Mary’s doctor also noted that our daughter who we already felt was brilliant (no biasness here!) is exhibiting signs of advancement in milestones.  She’s doing things that three year old can do like count to 5, knows colors and “singing” to music.  High five to this momma! No I’m not proud at all! (Wink, wink)
So when I mentioned the issues with Samuels’s nose and hearing she wanted to examine him quickly so we could get the history of his issues down in the time it takes to schedule an appointment with an ENT.  She mentioned that there could still be fluid on his ears causing his hearing issues and if his nose is still swollen on the inside (again she used a huge medical word describing these interworking’s of his nose) then he may need to have is adenoids removed and tubes inserted in his ears.  And of course what do I hear? The sound of a cash registers clinking since it’s a new year and our insurance has started over….ugh!
Even with all this new information about Mary’s eye and Sam’s ears and nose I know that God will be our Healer.  It says in Matthew 9:21-22 “She said to herself, “If I only touch his cloak, I will be healed.” Jesus turned and saw her. “Take heart, daughter,” he said, “your faith has healed you.” And the woman was healed from that moment.” I just have to meditate on this and know it to be true because I just know that the pediatrician is being overly cautious and there is nothing wrong with my baby girl. 

I also have to hold onto the fact that if my kids need further medical care, which will no doubt be expensive, that God will be my Provider as it says in Ezekiel 18:16 “He does not oppress anyone or require a pledge for a loan. He does not commit robbery but gives his food to the hungry and provides clothing for the naked.” How can one not love a God like ours? Keep you posted on the medical process; in the meantime prayers for my babies would be appreciated, thank you.

God Bless

Saturday, January 21, 2012

My Best Friend and Central Ohio Weather

I know I usually blog about my kids but today I need to talk about two things that are pretty important; my best friend Sarah and winter.  I know you’re thinking how are these two topics going to tie into each other?  Well just continue reading.

I have known my best friend Sarah since I was 10, now I’m not going to give away my age and admit how many years we’ve been friends, just know it’s as long as sisters have known each other.  She is truly the sisters I never had, my partner in crime, the person I always wanted to be.  Of course ours is the relationship that doesn’t require calling one another every night, although we have.  Our relationship isn’t the kind of friendship that has any jealousy, competition, or ill will when one person says or does something the other doesn’t agree with.  There’s plenty we don’t agree with, for instance she’s a Michigan fan and I’m a Buckeye.  She’s and democrat but leans independent and I am a republican that leans libertarian.  But neither of those or the other differences we have has ever caused us not to speak, well maybe during the actual Michigan/OSU game and if we do communicate it’s through Facebook and we generally tell the other one their team sucks.
Even when I was a pre-teen pain in the butt that wouldn’t stop bugging her to hang out, she still loved me and accepted me as friend.  Even when we drifted apart when she went on to college and I was stuck staying behind, we always talked on the phone as if we had just talked the day before.  I love her, she loves me and that’s it, it’s that simple.  There were dark times in Sarah’s life that kept me from seeing and talking to her but when we did speak she knew I still loved her and stuck by her even when others in her life couldn’t handle her situation.  After years of struggling with addiction she finally came through the other side a victor!
So when I heard she was having her first baby after all her struggle and strife I was overjoyed.  She had always worried that she would never get pregnant after all the years of abuse to her body with pills and alcohol.  I had gotten pretty sick during the end of September and most of October with a horrible cough which made talking on the phone next to impossible not to mention my kids just don’t allow me to talk on the phone. I could flip on the kids’ favorite movie that turns them into TV zombies that make me invisible, but during that same movie they would know if I left the room, locked myself in the bedroom and dialed the phone!  So when Sarah called and said that she wanted to see me and to meet her half way in between our two cities for lunch I was more the happy to oblige. 
The day of my anticipated travel up to my lunch date the inevitable happened; winter weather.  Normally winter weather doesn’t bother me except that I hate the cold and the snow only because I love the hot and the sand.  But I my hatred for winter hit a new level when I moved from northwest Ohio, where we can handle the snow, to central Ohio where they can’t.  In central Ohio we are always right on the precipice of snow and rain, which always equals ice.  I will drive in snow, slush, blowing snow, but I will NOT drive when it ices, especially around here.  The night before I was to depart it stared to snow which was expected, but what was not predicted was the amount of snow.  Now normally one wouldn’t freak out over an inch of snow especially when predicted, not here.  Also, one may not freak out over an inch of snow if it wasn’t predicted, not here.  Not only are the drivers here horrible when it comes to rain, sleet and snow but the weathermen induce panic with their “up to the minute radar” shenanigans.  These radars they have now can zoom in on your residential street and show exactly where the heaviest rain or snow fall is at that moment. They show the street cameras that are capturing all the winter weather coming down out of the sky and all the traffic tie ups.  They break in during your favorite show to give you a preview of weather to come, weather that’s here and where the weather is going.  They blitz the social media pages with their every minute posts and tweets telling you the snow has started to fall, or a certain suburb is already hit hard and it’s on the way to the next suburb; it’s crazy.  They [weathermen] create such a mass panic that you should never enter a grocery store on bad weather days because everyone is buying everything and store shelves are emptied, all over an inch of snow! They make this “snowmeggedon” type situation every time the weather even thinks of acting up.  And this was the exact situation I was facing the morning of my commute.  Now as I mentioned I do not like to drive in ice, had an experience with black ice that has left me more than a little nervous so I actually was one of the people glued to the social media updates on weather this particular day but I got so annoyed with my phone beeping every 20 seconds that I turned off my notifications and decided I’ll figure out what the weather situation is when it hits my windshield.
Once I reached Bob Evens I couldn’t get out of the car fast enough to see my beautiful pregnant friend.  As soon as I saw her the big hugs and hello’s started and of course I had to be the obnoxious one and rub the belly.  We sat down and started talking just like we always did, as if no time had ever passed.  The waitress came over took our order and we warned her we may be awhile and she graciously said she was there all night and not to worry.  We spent a few hours in that Bob Evens talking about everything from labor to politics to my kids and about her mom.  Her mom is very ill, she is dying of bone cancer and of course Sarah is taking it is “Sarah stride” but as she explained to me she has known of her mother’s diagnosis for quite some time so her death has been something she has been able to mourn for a while ago, but now that she’s having the baby I think she’s a little rattled with her mother’s passing seeming to be in the near future.  She had also wanted to get together in person because she had a very important question for me.  She needed a secondary guardian for little baby boy Jack and I couldn’t have been more honored or happier to say yes.  After all the important questions had been asked and all the catching up was done, it unfortunately was time to leave each other’s company and head back to our respective cities.
Once I was headed down US 23 south towards home I sat thinking about all the great childhood memories we had, all the great late night conversations and all the trials and triumphs we had been through, both together and apart.  I was happy for her and her new journey into motherhood just as she was happy for my journey even though it took me 2 ½ hours away, 8 years, 1 husband and 2 kids ago.  Once I got closer to the city it started to creep up on 5 o’clock rush hour and with this “snowmeggedon”/”iceapalooza" on the way people seemed more apt to cut me off and speed past me or drive at the speed of an average 90 year old gripping the wheel in fear, even though it hadn’t yet started to precipitate. 
Finally, I parked the car at the curb of my home at approximately 5:30, grabbed my cell and empty coffee cup then headed inside to be greeted by my boisterous children.  As soon as I shut the front door and took off my outer winter shell of coat, scarf and boots the snow began to fall.  I plopped down on the couch and immediately had my children in my lap watching cartoons.  While watching TV with the kids the National Weather Service kept interrupting our shows with the obnoxious beeping of the winter weather advisories for our area; all the while the snow outside our window had stopped and nothing more happened in our little burb. 
With a great day behind me despite the constant weather reminders and bad drivers it was time to head to bed and say my prayers to our Lord and of course Sarah, her baby boy Jack and her mother were at the top of my prayer list.  I can’t wait to welcome baby Jack in February and I will no doubt be caught up again in a “snowmeggedon” type situation but that won’t ever stop me from seeing the precious new life that has blessed my dear friend Sarah. 

God Bless

Thursday, January 19, 2012


Today was birthday party day for my two year old daughter Mary.  Friends had been invited, cupcakes baked and grandparents arriving, which are the best ingredients for a day of fun.
Today was going to be spent a Recreation Outlet in Powell, an indoor playground and then hot dogs for lunch over at Two Mad Dogs.  Recreation outlet is actually a showroom for playground equipment including swing sets, slides, basketball hoops and trampolines.  Even though it’s a retail store they allow “free play” on certain days of the week in the mornings; so I called up some of Sam and Mary’s friends (My girlfriends!) and told them to be there or be square.  Arrival time was set for 9:30am and hot dogs were to be consumed at 11:15.  The Recreation Outlet is approximately 20 minutes from my house so rising early in the morning to have kids (and mommy) fed, dressed and out the door on time was imperative. 
That “imperative” schedule went out the window when I didn’t wake up until I heard my husband bringing my daughter into our bedroom at 8:05am.  Even though I knew I needed to get up and get going I was so groggy it took me a few minutes to let it register that I was behind schedule about 30 minutes.  Of course once I recognized my tardiness I flew like a flash to the shower just as if I were in the “Twas the night before Christmas” poem. 
I actually had to go and wake my son, Samuel, to get him up and around since he likes to be the one to never do as his told. (i.e. eating, getting dressed, getting shoes and coat, well you get the picture.)  Once out of the shower and dressed I had breakfast warming up in the microwave, no time for sizzling bacon and hot toast like I had imagined the night before. No, reality was premade waffles from the freezer and per my sons request, chicken nuggets.  Hey! Whatever gets him to eat. Of course I couldn’t sit with my kids for breakfast, I had hair to dry and make up to apply so my 2 year old was left to her own devices eating a waffle covered in syrup and my son had to eat by himself without me nagging him to eat, eat, eat, eat! I didn't get breakfast because I had a bag of snacks and juice to pack and coffee to make.
Breakfast table cleanup was underway and I was actually on schedule.  I knew if I prayed to the Lord he’d come through on slowing down time! After all the stickiness of syrup was wiped from mouth and hands and uneaten chicken nuggets went to the dog we were ready for clothes and shoes.  Thankfully my 4 year old can pretty much dress himself and my two year old has the hang of things that dress up time went smoothly and quickly.  Now all that was left was the arrival of my parents, the zipping of coats and loading into the van.  Of course once all of the above had been completed and my reverse lights were on to get us on our way, my gas light turned on and of course it indicated that I only had 14 miles until empty,  that was not going to get us to the other side of town.  My mom graciously handed over her credit card and told me to put gas in my tank, on her.  Thanks mom!  OK, gas tank full, check.  Kids excited about playground, check. Seatbelts buckled, check.  Away we go!
We arrived at the Recreation Outlet around 9:45 and I was feeling guilty because we were 15 minutes later then I had told my friends but they were too were late, as usual.  This was the one time I was thankful they were late.  Once inside the kids were off and running, still with their coats on.  After signing the required release form that I was not going to sue Recreation Outlet if my kids got hurt I took their coats to a little cubby and I hardly knew where they were after that.  I am so happy my parents were with me because having two kids that want to do every slide, swing and trampoline in the place I didn’t have enough eyes, legs or arms to watch, chase or catch each of them.  PHEW! That place, is crazy.
After an hour and half of pure unadulterated playtime the lights in the place went down like a bar at 2am indicating “free play” was over.  I was waiting for the manager to come over the loud speaker and say “You don’t have to go home, but you can’t stay here”.  And we didn’t, stay there, we went to get hot dogs and have cupcakes.  When we arrived at the hot dog joint the wind began to blow and soon the snow started to fall.  This did not make me happy because driving anywhere with my dad is nerve racking let alone when it’s snowing. 
After all the hot dogs were eaten (some only half eaten) it was cupcake time.  Mary had picked herself out a pink frosted cupcake and was running her finger through the frosting as “Happy Birthday” was sung to her.  Mary had decided that she wasn’t going to use her hands and pick up the cupcake, oh no, she had to face plant herself into her cupcake.  (See picture below)
After we cleaned up the messy birthday girl we headed for home to open her gifts.  I had a feeling Mary may fall asleep on the 20 minute car ride home after a busy morning so I had grandpa in the backseat talking and playing with her to keep her awake and his nagging over my driving to a minimum.  She was on such a cupcake high grandpa had a pretty easy job.
She could hardly wait to get in the door , her coat and shoes off before tearing into her gifts! She received a cute Mini Mouse dress up set, a “Melissa and Doug” fruit and veggie cutting board set from grandma and grandpa and shopping cart with groceries from mommy and daddy.  Besides an hour and half nap she hasn’t stopped going since this morning.  She’s still going even now and it’s now 9:20 at night, she is refusing to go to bed since I mistakenly gave her a cupcake after dinner. 
I must say today was a blast, except for the fact that daddy had to miss out because he had to go do that thing called work.  That’s ok because we are going to do our own family outing after church on Sunday; it’s going to be a Dave and Busters day!
It is said in Psalm 127:3 that children are the heritage from the Lord, oh how true that is.  Today was a day that the Lord had made even though my daughter still sits in her crib calling my name as I type this blog at 9:30 at night.  I know that I will not here her tiny voice call my name for much longer and I will soak up every ounce of it.   

Good night and God Bless

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Two Years Ago

January 18, 2010 was a Monday as well as Martin Luther King Jr. Day.  I was excited because my husband was off work and we planned on just hanging around the house with our son.  I was 9 months pregnant with our second child, Mary; and I was 9 days away from my due date so lounging around the house sounded like fun.  Mary on the other hand had different plans for our day. 

I had been sleeping on the couch the last few months of my pregnancy because my back was really hurting and lying up against the back of the couch was quite comfy, so when I woke up at 6:45 in the morning to my husband typing on the computer it wasn’t a huge surprise.  What also wasn’t a big surprise was I was having more contractions.  When I was in my 22nd week of pregnancy I was plagued with constant Braxton Hicks contractions so these contractions weren’t anything really all that new.  I was going to head upstairs to our bed for a little more sleep time but just minutes after waking the contractions were really starting to hurt, bad!   

I must mention that a few weeks prior on January 6th I was having yet more contractions, but they were about every 5 minutes lasting about 5 minutes and I was really watching the clock and the intensity.  I had mentioned this to my husband and he just kept a watchful eye on me and kept asking if I needed anything.  Of course my parents, who were supposed to help out with Samuel when the baby was ready to be born were in Florida, it was the first real nasty snow storm of the year and to make matters worse it was 5 o’clock, not the best time to be having labor pains! Thankfully I was fooled once again by Mr. Braxton-Hicks and his contractions as they never got more intense and I actually fell asleep.

So when the morning of the 18th arrived and I announced I was having contractions my husband didn’t seem to be all that worried.  But when I told him I could barely stand up because of the pain he said ok, let’s go!  Since my parents were leaving Florida that morning and my mother-in-law who was in town from Texas was 2 ½ hours away visiting her other grandsons, I had to make a call to my dear friend Lara.  Sam wasn’t able to go the hospital with us and wait for my mother-in-law to pick him up (which was plan B while mom and dad were in Florida) because it was the height of H1N1 flu outbreak and hospitals had restrictions on children being at the hospital.  So with it being Martin Luther King Jr. Day Lara was off work and at home with her son.  I made the call to her around 8am, and we were off to the hospital about 15 minutes later.   

Once at the hospital they did the routine check in of name and insurance and set me up in a triage room to monitor my contractions and check my dilation.   I was 3 cm and my contractions were pretty intense.  They made the call to the on call physician and gave him an update and he told them to admit me and break my water.  I think by the time I got in a bed, hooked up to monitors and my dilation was checked again it was about 11am; it was also epidural time!  about 2 1/2 hours later I was lying in the bed talking to my husband he happened to look out the window and stated that his mother had just pulled into the parking lot.  There were nurses in my room at this point and informed us that I was 10cm and ready to go.  I giggled to George, “I don’t want your mom in here!” George agreed and was on his way out to the lounge when the nurse said, “Don’t you go anywhere dad, this baby is coming! I will inform the desk nurse not to allow any more visitors”.   She got on her radio and made that announcement to the desk nurse.  I won’t go into the labor and delivery freak show but I will say it was easy and quick! Two pushes and she was out at 1:58pm on January 18, 2010.  Our little baby Mary was here weighing in at 7lbs 3oz and she was the most beautiful baby I had ever seen, next to my first born of course.  She was so tiny yet so perfect. 

After Mary was born and all wrapped up in warm blankets they allowed my mother-in-law back to see us.  She was so overjoyed.  Not only did she get to see one of her grandbabies right after their birth, but this was her first granddaughter.  She was so thankful that she could be there to hold her and was as happy as a grandmother could be.  After Peggy left to relieve our sitter Mary started crying.  I figured she was probably hungry but there were no bottles down in labor and delivery, we would have to wait until we go our room.  Since my epidural was still going strong I couldn’t get up and walk and bounce her around so my husband stepped in for “ssshhh-ing” duty.  Finally one of the nurses took her temperature and discovered that it was 102 degrees.  They swooped in and took her from my husband’s arms and started to perform a ton of vitals on her.  Other than the fever she was normal.  We couldn’t go up to our room until her fever came down so we had to wait and pray.  After a few minutes my husband had realized that she was swaddled in two very warm blankets and mentioned this to the nurses.  They explained that they are so warm because they want them to simulate the warmth of the womb.  My husband disagreed and proceeded to unwrap her and wha-la! Her fever vanished.  She hasn’t been one to be warm since! 

The next day the procession of doctors commenced.  First, Mary’s pediatrician, then my OBG/YN.  We were both healthy and looking good.  I was even told I could go home that afternoon if I wished.  I did not wish to go home.  I was allowed 3 days per insurance and I was using all 3 days! Who doesn’t want to be pampered and taken care of? It turns out my decision was for the best. 

George had come back to the hospital that night to hang out with Mary and I and watch the season premiere of American Idol.  We chose this show to watch because in hospitals there’s not much of a choice when it comes to T.V. stations.  As we were sitting down to cover our ears and watch bad auditions George’s phone rang.  His mom had called to let us know that Sam had gotten sick, all over her and the kitchen table.  So our American Idol night was cut short and George ran back to the house to check on Sam while mommy sat alone in the hospital room sick with worry and guilt.  I know there was absolutely nothing I could for Sam being in the hospital but I still felt upset that his mommy could be there to take care of him.   

The next morning George came to pick us up and take us home and I couldn’t have been more ready to go home and see my little boy.  Plus my mom and dad were back from Florida and anxiously awaiting our arrival.  Once home I rushed into the house to hug and kiss my boy.  I missed him so much and was so worried about him since daddy had told me he was up most of the night throwing up and feeling awful.  So you can imagine my confusion and hurt when my son ran away upstairs to his room faster than I could move after giving birth.  I got to his bedroom and was asking for my hug and kiss when he pointed at me and said “Get Out!” and slammed the door in my face.  I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry.  I went back down stairs hugged my parents and stood in total amazement over what had just transpired.  I had to remind myself that he hadn’t see me in three days, the longest we’ve ever been apart since he was born, his mommy wasn’t there to take care of him when he was sick, Grams was in town from Texas, Grandma and Grandpa, whom he hadn’t seen in weeks were back from Florida and this new little “thing” was here in HIS house! That is quite an overwhelming day for anyone let alone a 2 ½ year old.

After a little time to himself to cool off he came downstairs and joined us.  He crawled quietly up on my lap and proceeded to snuggle.  I was so thankful for that moment.  After my parents held, kissed and gushed over their new granddaughter they departed for their home and left us to unwind and relax.  Well the next morning when my husband woke up with a fever and vomiting the unwinding and relaxing came to a halt. Yep, he caught Sam’s bug! Thank GOD his mom was staying with us a few days more because George was downright sick.  We quarantined him to the bedroom and away from the baby.  Later that night, looking like a zombie, he joined us downstairs for a late movie.  He was feeling better, just really tired.  So of course when I woke up on Friday I too was sick with a fever and feeling awful, but luckily I didn’t have all the other stuff.  PHEW! But I too was quarantined away from the baby.  There’s nothing quite like coming home with a new baby and having the flu sweep through the house.  I am so thankful Peggy never got sick, she truly was a blessing that week.   

So two years later our little Mary is still our "baby" and is such a sweetie, with this tiny voice, beautiful smile, golden curls with killer dance moves.  Even though it’s been a struggle getting Sam used to the fact this “Little Sister” thing isn’t going anywhere, he’ll be the first and the loudest to tell you how much he loves her.  She is just wrapped so tight around all our hearts.  Our kids are truly God’s blessing to us and even though I don’t need a birthday to remind me of that fact, it’s birthdays that really make it hit your heart. 

Happy 2nd birthday to my "Tiny Dancer"
Mommy, Daddy and Samuel love you very much

God Bless

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Bad Day x2

Wednesday started out like any other, kids up watching cartoons, breakfast being made and grandparents arriving.  But this Wednesday was picture day for Mary’s 2nd birthday!

You can imagine my excitement and trepidation when arriving to a photo studio with two kids at a very unpredictable behavioral age.  You just never know if you’ll get good pictures, smiles and cooperation.  Well I will just say that Mary did very well and her pictures turned out better then I imaged.  

After pictures we trucked it back to my house to pick up my dad for lunch at Olive Garden.  It’s hands down in my top five favorite restaurants plus my kids will eat spaghetti whenever it’s put in front of them.  Lunch went surprisingly well with both kids behaving and eating. The rest of the afternoon after the grandparents departure went smoothly, even when Mary refused to nap. 

So, you are probably wondering when this bad day will begin right?  Well, it began at the end.  8:30 bedtime had rolled around and I was chucking up this day as a good day; Mary went to bed without screaming (more on that in another blog), Sam was enjoying some last minute playtime with daddy and I had an important phone call with my best friend on the agenda after all the tucking in was complete.  It was a good day until I heard “thwack!” and Sam’s laughter turn to screams.

I ran into Sam’s room where I could hear daddy saying “Oh stop crying, you're fine it’s just you’re doll!” I said “What happened!?!” my husband was sort of giggling because he thought his son was being over sensitive to hit to the head with an oversized plush Diego doll. (They were at the beginning stages of a pillow/plush doll fight)  The microwave beeped and I went to get Sam’s milk when I heard my husband say “What the H_ll!” and I see a blur of man and boy rush to the bathroom.

I didn’t even know what was going so when I entered the bathroom to see blood gushing from my sons head, that was the last thing I expected to see.  Of course crying, screaming and panic was engulfing my 4 year old and we did all we could to remain calm, stop the bleeding and figure out what had happened.  I proceeded to ask my husband what they were doing prior to the blood and he explained that they were whacking each other with the large Diego doll and a Brutus Buckeye pillow when all this went down.

I ran and grabbed the Diego doll and started feeling around for anything that could have hurt my son.  Diego’s eyes are not hard like on some dolls, the entire doll is plush so it had to have been something sharp stuck to it but I couldn’t feel anything.  I took the doll into the bathroom where my husband still had my son on his lap holding a blood soaked towel to his head.  The bleeding thank God stopped quickly and my son began to calm.  I asked Sam what had hit him and he answered “my car hit me”.  You know you can see the same question marks above my head as I did.  How could a matchbox car hit him when daddy was using a doll to pillow fight with? Well this sneaky doll has pockets in his vest and shorts and Sam had forgot that he hid a matchbox car in one of Diego’s pockets which apparently is what hit Sam’s head and caused it to bleed so profusely.  After an hour of watching Nick Jr. and what could be discribed as a crime scene clean-up, we tucked him in for the night, kissed his head and sent him off to dream land.

After my phone call with my best friend I checked my social media accounts, turned off the TV and kissed my husband good night around 11:45.  At 1:15 AM my daughter cried out from her crib and we went to check on her.  She had kicked off her blankets and seemed more then irritated by this so we covered her up and kissed her back to sleep.  Until 1:27 AM reared its ugly head!

She was crying as if she was scared so I picked her up and started to rock and “ssshhh” her when a tiny little cough emitted followed by major vomit.  I won’t go into the gory details but let’s just say it was a lot and it wouldn’t stop coming.  She ended up vomiting so much that she started to heave.  Her pour little body was just racked with heaves and sobs.  After her stomach calmed a bit she just wanted held and we obliged.  While in our arms she stared to grunt in pain and more heaves followed by more grunts of pain.  Her little tummy was just a mess.  After an hour and half of heaves, grunts and sobs and mommy praying to our Lord to make her well she fell into a deep sleep and I gently returned her to her crib.  I too returned to my bed crawling in ever so silently so that I wouldn’t wake my husband.  He did after all still have to get up for work, but I secretly prayed that he would call off. 

Well both my prayers came true 4 hours later! She was feeling better, albeit tired, but better and my husband did indeed take off work.  Hallelujah!  He drove my son to preschool and let Mary and I rest in bed.  Later, he even took the kids downstairs with him so I could take a much deserved nap while he did school work. 

But even after all this blood and gore of the last 24 hours God spoke to me today through Matthew 8:1-3; it reads “When he [Jesus], came down from the mountainside, large crowds followed him. A man with leprosy came and knelt before him and said, “Lord, if are willing, you can make me clean”.  Jesus reached out his hand and touched the man.  I am willing,” he said “Be clean!  Immediately he was cured of his leprosy.”  When I read that from my daily reading plan (which are totally random daily picks from scripture) tears sprang to my eyes because I had prayed to God while rocking her “Please God, make her feel better” over and over again and He did! It also reminded me to check my worry at the door about any kind of relapse of stomach issues through tonight because she is indeed healed! God is so good!

I will leave you with this; never under estimate the power of Christ or the resilience of a child.
God Bless